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  • Writer's pictureBrock Williamson, CFP®

Have a Great Summer by Practicing Strategic Omission

As summer comes upon us, many people take time off work, travel, and spend time with family and loved ones. The summer provides many opportunities for us to make memories – memories that can last a lifetime and provide years of joy. 

 

But life is complex. We often need to juggle multiple priorities, many of which are good. Yet we have limited time. We choose to focus and spend time on some things at the expense of others…all of which may be good. There are things that are good, things that are better, and things that are best. To make this a great summer, we should identify and choose those things that are best, strategically omitting other things that may be good. 

 

Strategic Omission 

 

We often think achieving greater results such greater happiness, greater meaning, and greater connections requires that we do more of something. But the opposite is actually true. We can enhance our lives and experiences by omitting things that may distract us or “crowd out” things that are better or best. 

 

This can be a difficult endeavor because much of what we do on a daily basis is habitual. We may want to remove an activity from our life but have a hard time because we do it automatically. This is where creating a “Don’t Do List” (instead of a To-Do List) could be helpful. Identify what you will stop doing, write it down, and follow it daily just like you would a to-do list.  

 

What Should I Omit? 

 

As you consider what may be best to omit from your life this summer, the first place to start is on your personal values. Which activities best support your values and the legacy you want to leave?  Which activities do you want to engage in that do not necessarily support your values? And which are negative activities? Make a list and prioritize. Then choose to omit at least one of them from your life this summer – making time for things that are better and best.   

 

Too many people live with regret – things they wish they would have done differently but cannot go back and change. The summer of 2024 will only happen one time. I encourage you to consider what activities you can stop doing so you can have the best summer possible. 


©The Behavioral Finance Network 

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